The family reunion of sorts features Desmond Trufant playing with UW on Saturday, while Seahawk cornerback Marcus will play Isaiah, a New York Jet, on Sunday.
The shirts will be divided, not the allegiances: one-half Seahawks, one-half Jets and 100 percent Trufant.
The jerseys were made special for Sunday’s Seattle-New York game that will double as a celebration for Lloyd and Constance Trufant, the parents of what is becoming the NFL’s first family of Washington.
Marcus, 31, is the oldest brother and the pioneer. A lightly recruited player out of Wilson High School in Tacoma who went to Washington State, became a first-round pick and is now in his 10th season playing cornerback for his hometown Seahawks.
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Isaiah, 29, started in the same place, and while he may have run faster, he had to walk a different path. He weighed only 135 pounds as a high-school senior, walked on at cornerback at Eastern Washington. He played arena football in Spokane, moved on to the now-defunct United Football League before making the Jets, where he’s now in his third season as a reserve defensive back and special-teams player.
“To make it to the NFL was a big accomplishment for him,” Marcus said. “I’m just very proud of him.”
As of this October, the Pro Football Hall of Fame has documented 348 sets of brothers who played in the NFL. The list includes families who attended state high schools, like Damon and Brock Huard, Teyo and Riall Johnson, and former Seahawks like Jordan Babineaux who played against his brother, Jonathan who was with the Atlanta Falcons, in Seattle in 2005.
The Trufant twist is that they are not only from this state — and playing in this state — but the NFL game will come fewer than 24 hours after their youngest sibling, Desmond, plays in the same stadium in his final home game for the University of Washington.
Desmond is going to be another chapter to this story of three brothers who play the same position. This is a once-in-a-generation kind of story for the Trufants and the city they come from.
“Sure, I’m proud of them,” said Don Clegg, football coach at Wilson High School. “But Mom and Dad are real proud of them.”
Clegg has been at Wilson for 25 years, coaching all three brothers. He watched Marcus come back after suffering a broken ankle his freshman year in high school on through the Cougars’ decision to recruit Marcus after Washington passed.
And Clegg was the coach in a playoff game against Kentwood when Isaiah went head-to-head with Mike Karney, who would go on to play first at Arizona State and later in the NFL. Well, on this play Karney went to block Trufant, who got his pads low and let physics put Karney on his noggin.
“Just flips him upside down,” Clegg said, “because he got underneath him.”
Isaiah walked on at Eastern, earned a scholarship by spring of his first year, and went on to play indoor football in Spokane in 2006.
He played in Kansas City, but it was for an arena-league team called the Brigade — not the Chiefs. He played in Arizona, only it was for the Rattlers not the Cardinals. He played for former NFL coach Jim Fassel in Las Vegas’ UFL franchise before making his NFL debut.
“Isaiah is a story in and of himself of determination and never giving up,” Clegg said. “He has had to fight to where he’s at simply because of his size.”
First signed by the Jets in December 2010, Isaiah is now in his third season there. Last year, he returned a blocked punt 18 yards for a touchdown.
On Sunday, he will be on the road with the Jets, yet playing at home in a game that’s also a family reunion.
• RB Marshawn Lynch sat out practice for a second consecutive day because of a sore back and injured wrist. DT Red Bryant (foot), S Kam Chancellor (quadriceps) and DT Clinton McDonald (groin) also each missed their second consecutive day.
• G James Carpenter and LB K.J. Wright sat out practice as they recover from concussions.
• DT Jason Jones (ankle) and WR Braylon Edwards (knee) were limited in practice Thursday, putting them on schedule to return Sunday provided there are no setbacks.
Danny O’Neil: 206-464-2364 or firstname.lastname@example.org. On Twitter @dannyoneil.